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11.08.2005 General News

Ghanaian Prosthetics undergo training in new technology


Accra, Aug. 11, GNA - Seven Ghanaian Prosthetics on Thursday ended their four months training in the use of new technology in making artificial limbs for people who had their legs amputated below the knee.

The training, which was organised by Standing for Hope, a non-governmental organisation (NGO) based in United States, took them through a new procedure that would take at a day to prepare one limb instead of using two weeks to prepare one limb with the conventional method.

Briefing the media in Accra, Mr Peter Rosenberger, founder of the organisation, said with the training, there was no need for government to spend money sending health personnel abroad to undergo training in prosthetics or a person, who have had his or her leg amputated below the knee travelling abroad for replacement with artificial limb. He said the procedure taught was one of the best practiced in the world and Ghana was fortunate to have such a facility.

Mr Rosenberger said limbs using the new procedure was adjustable, easy to be made and made movement easier, adding "it is very difficult even for one to identify which leg have been amputated if you should see them walking".

He explained that prosthetics was made out of foam materials and it came with its accessories and made movements very easy like any other human with the two natural legs on.

He said the first batch of trainers would also recruit younger ones for training to sustain the exercise.

During the training, seven beneficiaries including a woman had their limbs fitted at no cost.

According Mr Rosenberger it cost 4,000 dollars on the average for one to have the artificial limb with the new technology and those who benefited from the free would have together paid about 40 million cedis. He said the procedure would be much more affordable for all to access and that the infrastructure would be built and the materials would soon be brought into the country for actual work to begin but "there are plans to make the materials locally."

Mr Daniel Kodi, Chief Technical Officer, National Prosthetics Orthopaedic Centre of the Ghana Health Service, commended Standing for Hope for their generous services and said the facility would give real hope to people, who had had their legs amputated below the knee. He said seven limbs had been fitted for beneficiaries since Monday, August 8 to Thursday August 11, free of charge and those to come after today would only pay for the materials, which is cost about 171,000 cedis.

The beneficiaries, who could not hide their joy, thanked the team for giving them hope and bringing them back onto their feet.